The Churchill Family of Jotham Churchill from which we came...

by Great-great-granddaughter Irene Clough Hahn

Jotham Churchill, our ancestor was son of John and Martha (Baldwin) Churchill, formerly of Hubbardton, Rutland, Vermont and later of Tully, New York when it was part of Onondaga county. Our Jotham was ggg-grandson of Josiah Churchell and his wife Elizabeth Foote of Wethersfield, CT.

Jotham was born 29 Dec 1804, Hubbardton, Ruthland, Vermont and died before 25th June 1869 in Dodge county, Minnesota. Dodge county has no record of his death. Iíve based his death date on when a petition was filed by his son George, stating his father was of Milton, Dodge, Minnesota at time of death. Also the 1870 Mortality Census Minnesota, township of Milton, Dodge county shows Jotham died age 65 of Dropsy June 1869, The Berne Cemetery records show Jotham being buried in an unmarked grave in Berne, Dodge, Minnesota.

To date no marriage record has been found when or where Jotham married Euphemia Randall. Euphemia who was born 2 Feb 1810 Milton/Galway, Saratoga, New York and died between 4 Mar 1889-19 Sept 1891 in Berne. She was buried in same cemetery as Jotham. (Dodge county records show she was also called Malinda, as she signed her name this way sometimes). Euphemia was daughter of Joshua Randall (1782-1852) born New York and Sarah Smith (1780-1865) born New Jersey.

Jotham and family were in Cortland county NY until they moved to Indiana some time before daughter Eliza was born in 1837. How long they stayed in Indiana and where is not known, however they moved to Laona, Winnebago, Illinois before 1849 where the last of their two children were born. Laona is where Euphemiaís mother Sarah (Smith) Randall had moved with her son William Randall in 1836 from New York. This would explain why Jotham and family were in Illinois. Jotham along with family are listed on the 1850 census of Illinois, Winnebago, Laona township, page 323, 3 Oct 1850. The family was still there in spring of 1852.

Jotham and Euphemiaís children:

1-2 Twin boys born 1826 New York, lived only three days.
3- Silas born 1828 East Scott, New York
4- William Veloris born 14 Dec1832 New York died 6 June 1875 MN
5- Martha Mandana born 1833 New York died 2 Mar 1903 ND
6- John Irwin born 1834 New York
7- Isaiah Edward born 1836 New York died 22 Aug 1873 MN
8- Eliza Ursula born 20 Mar 1837 Indiana died 27 May 1900 MN
9- Julia Clarinda born 26 Oct 1840 Indiana died 29 May 1922 CA
10- Irena born 1841 Indiana died 8 June 1923 MN
11- Sylvester born 1844 Indiana died 10 Feb 1925 MN
12- George Edwin born 1845 Indiana died 22 Feb 1884 MN
13- Frances Alceta born Aug 1849 Illinois
14- Arminda Isabel born Aug1850 died Nov 1851 Laona, Winnebago County, IL

The family may have also lived in Iowa near Fayette and Bremer counties as my great grandmother Eliza Churchill was married to John Robert Linn in 1855, they lived at Waverly, Bremer County and West Union, Fayette county, Iowa. Elizaís sons Warren and Wallace were born there.

According to the Goodhue County History, Jothamís sons William and Sylvester were already in Minnesota in 1855 and Minnesota records show that Jotham was located on Military Bounty land, Warrant 27300, 160 acres 28 July 1857, on SE1/2 Sec 6 township 108 Range 16 West. This warrant was not issued to him for personal service but was assigned to him by one Eliza Bullock, widow of John Bullock. Jotham and family were found on the Goodhue county, Minnesota Territory census 1857. Again on the 1860 census Euphemia is listed in Cherry Grove, Goodhue county, Minnesota.

The following I found among notes and copies of old letters sent to the DAR by cousin Evangeline (Linn) Halleck daugther of Warren Linn. Evangeline had done some research on Jothamís family in early 1940ís when she was writting a book "Seven Generations of Linns". Quote from a note from 1940ís: Halsey Stevens another cousin had a letter written by Eliza Churchill Linn (my great-grandmother) dated 19 Feb 1865, Milton, Iowa (should be Minnesota not Iowa as Eliza was in Milton, Dodge county, Minnesota with her parents and divorced from John Robert Linn). Eliza wrote: Father has a timber farm of 160 acres. He has about 25 acres cleared on it. My oldest sister, Marthaís health is very poor. My sister Julia, next younger than me, is very much out of health, she has been married about 9 years this winter, she has two children, a boy and girl, and has lost two little girls, Minnie and Elly. My sister Irena, next younger than Julia, is 24 years old this winter, and my baby sister was 16 years old last August, she is boarding with my brother Isaiah in Steele Center, Minnesota this winter and going to school. My oldest brother Silas went to California in 1849 and we donít know whether he is alive or not. We moved away from Illinois and we donít know where to direct to him and if he is alive he donít know where to direct to us. My brother William is living in the state of Nevada, in Virginia City. He has been there about six years. Brother John has been dead about seven years. My brother Sylvester, is at home this winter going to school, and my brother Edwin is in Steele Center, Minnesota going to school. I am spending the winter at home, and have two of my children with me, the oldest 5 years old and the other one year and a half. (This would be Wallace and Frederick. The oldest son Warren was living with his fatherís sister.)

Quote from letter written by Julia Clarinda Churchill Billings Warner, dated 12 Jan 1907, Geneva, Nebraska to her nephew Herbert Churchill in Minnesota. Julia was daughter of Jotham and Euphemia Randall Churchill. Father Jotham Churchill was very handy, he learned the shoemakerís trade and used to make our shoes. Otherwise in the hard times in the early days in old Winnebago, northern Illinois, we children would certainly have had to go without shoes, he was handy in all kinds of work, as well as mother. He used to make his sleds and axhelves (sic). Nearly all the wells in the early days in Illinois, for miles around, father stoned, as few could stone so they would not cave-in. He also was in constant demand during harvest and haying time, because he could stack both hay and grain to shed water and not tumble over. All fatherís and motherís work have been unusual all kinds of work. Of the various brothers and sisters, she wrote: Silas Churchill, oldest living child, went overland to California with the first company that went from northern Illinois. He was 21 or 22 years old and a real motherís boy. From the time he could earn small sums, above necessary clothing, it was all brought home and given to mother, a tribute from a loyal loving heart to his own mother who was comparatively young and a very handsome woman. A mother who was very kind and forgiving to everybody, and always loving and forgiving her children. Brother Silas wrote a letter to mother when he and the company he went with, was on the mountains in sight of San Francisco, but I believe 200-300 miles away from the golden city. He said when "he got his boots full of gold he would come back, buy a farm and build her a fine house." Had he lived he surely would have done it. We never heard from him again. John Irving Churchill, we donít know what became of him. None of us have seen him since 1855. I believe there was foul play in his being among the missing. Sylvester Churchill, good disposition, smart in business, a boy who worked and bought calves when he was but nine years old. Princely in manners at 15, without a thought that he appeared better than other boys, not married. George Edwin Churchill, the last of the boys, not married, died a bachelor at about 40 years of age. Arminda Isabel Churchill, fatherís and motherís last baby, lived a puny and sickly life, died at age of one and a half years. Well I remember tho but a little girl, when she was buried. the bleak November day, the large flakes of snow, the sad thought of the little sister being buried in the ground and when the grave was filled and the foot and head boards put in place, how father took off his hat and thanked all the friends and neighbors for their kindness. How a neighbor took father, mother and six of us children home with them to a late dinner, then to bed. Father and mother to stay all night, until father took four of us older ones home and went back himself. Eliza and I were sad, sad, little mourners. We did not know what to do with ourselves. We finally got the hymn book and sang to the best of our ability, thinking that the only appropriate thing we could do. Isaiah was a rail splitter. John took Daguerreotypes. William made a large fortune in the early days at Virginia City, Nevada. In the early days, Martha was a dressmaker. Eliza was a skilled worker in making hair switches, curls, puffs and was a schoolteacher and one of the neatest housekeepers and worker you ever saw.

 

 

        Submitted by Irene Clough Hahn. Email: iween2@ncis.com.